La Cumbre Presentation -- 1998
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Added back to the In-Flight Survey in 1996 were two key questions to determine frequency of travel. Here you can see the average number of trips made by each region, including Mexico air travelers, over the past five years.

Each region is quite distinct, with longer haul South American travelers making the fewest trips.

As noted earlier, we saw a sizeable resurgence in air travel from Mexico in 1996, following the devaluation of the peso. As there may have been rumbles through many of the Latin economies, it is not surprising to see the number of trips in 1996 higher than 1997. However, this trend to fewer trips occurs in both Europe and overseas travelers in general to the U.S.

By the way, it does not follow that you can divide by five to get the average number of trips per year! I tried! For South America, trips in the last 12 months averaged 2.5; 3.2 for Central America; 3.7 for the Caribbean; and 4.2 for Mexico air travel.

This annual number of trips really takes on significance for these markets. Take Mexico for example. The current air market is 1.3 million arrivals (not individuals). Divide that by average 4.2 annual trips. You are down to a traveling population of just over 300 thousand. If you are looking for the holiday or discretionary traveler among this small population, you have to subtract out the business traveler who makes up about a third of our Mexican air travel market and makes even more annual trips. This brings your discretionary traveler population down to well below 200,000 individuals traveling to the U.S.!

Chart 12 -- Average Number of Trips to the U.S. in the Last Five Years

Average Number of Trips to the U.S. in the Last Five Years

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